It’s no secret that we like to shop. We love finding and purchasing cool products for our home, our office, our wardrobe, and our friends and family. What if all that shopping could save the world? That might be a bit of an overstatement, but there are plenty of ways to harness your consumer power for good. These 20 companies do good in the world while also creating totally rad products!
1. TOMS: Who doesn’t love TOMS shoes? In fact, we have been known to waterproof ours so we could wear them whenever, wherever. On top of being super stylish and mega comfy, they’re also one of the original save-the-world products. For every pair you buy, a pair gets donated to a person in need. There you have it: finally, an excuse to buy more shoes.
2. Charity Miles: This app lets you turn miles you run into real money for charity! You can choose from 20 different charities including Stand Up to Cancer, Feeding America, and Autism Speaks. For every mile you run or walk, $.25 is donated to your chosen organization and for every mile you bike, $.10 is donated.
3. Kite: We wrote about this product fairly recently, but still can’t get over how cool it is. Not only can you protect yourself from bug bites with that toxic (and smelly!) bug spray, you can also help prevent mosquito-borne illnesses elsewhere in the world. Nice!
4. WakaWaka Solar Charger: Charge your phone or let the light shine in with this solar charger/lamp combo that stores up a full day’s sunlight for your use. The company uses the profits made from selling these in developed nations to provide them inexpensively in off-grid communities to improve the quality of life. On top of that, hello, that bright yellow? We’re in.
5. (Red): A more popular cause, this organization partners with a variety of different companies to create the (Red) line of products. A portion of the profits from selling these products go to fighting AIDS. Because there are so many different options, anyone can find something from this line that they want to purchase, which means we can all work to end AIDS in our lifetime.
6. Warby Parker: Similar to TOMS, this company operates on the buy one-give one system. For every pair of impeccably designed eyeglasses or sunglasses you purchase, the company donates a pair of glasses to someone who needs them. They frequently partner with celebrities to support specific charities (including Mindy Kaling, AKA Kelly from The Office and our current girl crush, pictured above with the founder of DonorsChoose.org).
7. Baby Teresa: This company produces adorable, organic cotton baby clothes for your little one. For every baby outfit you purchase, one gets donated to a child in need. For every accessory you purchase (think adorable baby hats!), a portion of the sale goes to providing formula for those who need it. Oh, and a company whose name is an adorable wordplay on Mother Teresa? Kind of awesome. #welovepuns
8. Nike #BeTrue Collection: So hashtags, rainbows, and Nike? This might be the coolest combo ever. Profits from the #BeTrue collection, which features shoes, apparel, and accessories (like iPhone cases!), go to the LGBT Sports Coalition to work towards ending discrimination in sport.
9. Man Candles: This company, started by a 13-year old (!!!) from Ohio, sells unique candles with scents like “Fresh Cut Grass” and “NY Style Pizza.” The candles are made inside of an actual soup can — after the soup inside is donated to a local soup kitchen! These sound like a great gift idea. You’re giving both a uniquely scented candle and the warm-fuzzy feeling of feeding those who need the help. If you’re not so into the ManCan scent, the company also makes SheCans with more traditional scents.
10. Beers not Bombs: We’re huge fans of unique bottle openers, and this one certainly fits the bill. In addition to boldly declaring “Beers not Bombs” on the face made from disarmed nuclear systems, the opener does some real good: the company donates 20% of profits to non-profits like Doctors without Borders and the Peace Corps. They also make wine stoppers if that’s more your poison.
11. A Peaceful Bomb Vase: Half vase, half sculpture, this piece makes a powerful statement for peace while also acting as an elegant addition to your decor. Part of the proceeds go towards “Act Now to Stop War & End Racism” (A.N.S.W.E.R.).
12. Radiant Cosmetics: This cosmetics company donates at least 20% of their profits to anti-trafficking organizations. On top of that, none of their products are tested on animals. Oh, and did we mention they’re adorable? We’re loving the colors of the moisturizing lipstick
13. Indego Africa: Indego Africa partners with women artisans in Rwanda to create products and then re-invests 100% of the profits into training programs on business development and financial literacy for these very artisans. They offer a wide range of products but most are bright, colorful, and gorgeous, on top of doing good!
14. Luckyou: Similar to Indego Africa, Luckyou works to support women artisans, in this case in South Africa. All of the products are created out of recycled magazines which is amazing considering how cool they look! We’re DIY-inspired for sure.
15. Sir Richard’s Condoms: This company works to promote global health by donating condoms to developing countries to help prevent the spread of disease. Like TOMS and Warby Parker, they abide by BOGO (buy one, give one!). And besides, how well designed is that packaging?
16. OneHope Wine: What’s better than wine? Wine that gives back, of course! This brand also has a choose-your-own-charity element to it. Each bottle has a certain amount of money designated for a specific charity and then lets you pick where another portion goes. For instance, if you buy this California Chardonnay, $3 will go to Fight Against Breast Cancer, and you can pick what charity will get an additional $1.90. And then you get wine. Everybody wins!
17. See Scout Sleep: You didn’t think we’d leave Fido out, did you? These adorable dog beds will help your pooch and you sleep well at night because the company donates a portion of profits to animal shelters and environmental protection. They also sell the world’s cutest leashes!
18. Seltzer Seven Year Pen: So first of all, these might be the quirkiest and coolest pens we’ve ever seen and we’ve seen a lot. For the hipster, the “Mustache” is a must; for romantics, the “Love Letters” pen is a match made in heaven. We’re just looking to get the “Need Coffee” pen in our office. As if the awesome factor wasn’t enough, a portion of proceeds goes to the Earth Justice foundation.
19. Falling Whistles Necklace: A symbol of protest in the Congo, this necklace lets you show your support for peace in the region. The whistle is designed to start conversation so that you can put your mouth where your money is: working for peace in the Congo. Proceeds from the sales go to education and advocacy in the Congo.
20. Flex Watches: This brightly colored, interchangeable watches raise awareness for various charities while also donating 10% of profits to the same charities. Plus, the color blocking is totally on trend! (And how cool is that chevron?)
Bonus! SnuzNLuz: So you know how hard it is to get up in the morning without hitting the snooze 10 times? Yeah, so do we. This clock tries to combat that with a simple premise: every time you hit the snooze button, it will donate a certain amount of money to a charity you hate. Think opposite political party foundation, or PETA if you’re a hunter, or the NRA if you’re for gun control. While we appreciate the idea behind this, we might just set it to charities we actually like. Most mornings, the lost cash in our bank accounts will be enough to get us up and on the days it’s not, we’re saving the world in our sleep which is pretty darn cool.
How do you give back? Are there any other socially-conscious companies we should know about? Let us know in the comments below or come join the conversation on Facebook.